The Metroplex has much to offer in the way of art culture and my husband and I have enjoyed several exhibits and special events at these museums in both Fort Worth and Dallas.
One such event is First Fridays at the Mod, which offers live music to the public once a month at the Modern Art Museum in Fort Worth*. You can enjoy the performance and also purchase a ticket to the art museum, which stays open later this particular evening. The music performance is offered 5:00 pm-8:00pm and is diverse in style. A jazz trio was performing on the night we visited, much to our delight!
Small tables and benches are scattered about the huge foyer for seating. Reservations for dinner can be made at the museum's restaurant, while wine or beverages can be ordered as the wait staff breezes by. Restaurant hours are 6:30 pm-8:30 pm.
A complimentary twenty minute docent led tour is available at 6:30 p.m. that evening for those who are Mod members or Star Telegram Press Pass holders. We didn't arrive in time for this, but we would definitely be interested in the tour on our next visit!
*Admission to First Friday at the Mod is $10 per person.
Fort Worth's Museum of Art is a sleek aluminum and glass building designed by Tadao Ando, comprising over 50,000 square feet of exhibit area. It was constructed in 2002 with a gallery space which has been compared to New York's Museum of Modern Art (pictures 1 & 2).
Within the building, vast windows allow sunlight to play throughout the corridors. Concrete walls provide a neutral backdrop for the art. Outdoors, a wide swath of green grass surrounds most of the building, with a few sculptures giving added focus to the grounds.
We enjoy rambling through a museum's art garden! As Jim and I visited the sculptures outside, we discovered the following pieces:
picture #3 Reclining Woman by Henry Moore
picture #4 Vortex by Richard Serra
My favorite part of this museum is its reflecting pool, which seems to float the entire building if seen from the cafe. It was so restful sipping an ice tea on the cafe patio in this tranquil setting (picture 5).
Special events: The museum invites artist, scholars and critics to give lectures on Tuesday evenings, beginning at 7pm. First Fridays at the Modern offer live music and cocktails from 5pm-8pm. On this day, a docent-led tour is available beginning at 6:30 pm and open to museum members and Star-Telegram Press Pass holders.
Hours are Tues.-Sat. 10 am-5pm with extended hours on Tues. evenings Sept.-Nov. and Feb.-Apr. Sunday hours are 11am-5pm.
Admission is $10; $4 for students with ID and Seniors over age 60; free for ages 12 and under. There is no charge to visit the Grand Lobby, The Modern Shop* or the Cafe Modern.
Note: *The Modern Shop had some unique items which would make great gifts for upcoming birthdays or Christmas.
This exhibit featuring Ron Mueck's amazing realistic sculptures had been promoted for weeks. Jim and I visited Fort Worth's Modern Art Museum to see his thought provoking pieces on the very last weekend of the exhibit. We were so glad we did!
The Seated Woman (1999) was one of my favorite works by this fantastic artist. Fortunately, it is part of the permanent collection at the museum. It looks more like a photograph, rather than a creation of silicone, acrylic, polyurethane foam and fabric measuring about two feet tall. Notice her time worn face and delicately executed hands...and alligator shoes!
Picture #2 shows a sculpture titled Two Women, which measured around two feet tall. They are standing on a street corner gossiping--I found them immensely intriguing. Were they talking about us as we gawked and commented on the pieces? One expected them to move at any moment or succumb to a twitch or two!
I enjoy art tremendously, but I have not always been fond of modern art, so I thought I would check it out and maybe something would change my mind. I will say, that some of the exhibits I just did not like or think they were not particularly interesting, but I do appreciate the artist talent and desire. Yet, there were many I did enjoy and get! The building itself to me was lovely and a piece of art. The museum was originally established in 1892 by a group of out of box thinking women during their day. By 1904 they started purchasing many types of art collections. Today it holds over 3,000 pieces within its vast collection. Not every piece is on display. The building its self was built in 2002 which was designed by Tadao Ando's.
Probably the one exhibit that I enjoyed was a array of photographs taken over a many years of four sisters. It was touching to see, but what was unique is how their expressions really never changed. I did notice how either life has been good or challenging on each sister. Very impressive. Another was this slow motion picture of two ladies greeting, called The Greeting by Bill Viola. An interesting approach to art. Yet, the floor of candy wrappers was a bit much. There was a huge canvas oil painting called The Ark, by Melissa Miller and I enjoyed that one. There was a painting of a running horse, called Cabin Fever by Susan Rothenberg, of course I liked that one. There was a very huge painting done in total red, but how it was painting I found that one interesting. Either way it was fun to explore and I enjoyed it very much.
Tue 10 am–5 pm (Feb-Apr, Sep-Nov 10 am-7 pm)
Wed 10 am–5 pm
Thu 10 am–5 pm
Fri 10 am–8 pm
Sat 10 am–5 pm
Sun 10 am–5 pm
The Modern is closed Mondays and holidays, including New Year's Day, Independence Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, and Christmas.
Inclement Weather Policy:
During inclement weather, the Museum will close to the public if Fort Worth Independent School District is closed. www.fortworthisd.org
Admission includes entrance to permanent collection exhibitions, all special and traveling exhibitions, and scheduled tours and gallery programs.
$4: Students with ID and Seniors (60+)
$10: General (13 to Adult)
Free: Children 12 and under
Free: Modern members
The Museum is free on the first Sunday of every month and half price every Wednesday.
Access to the Grand Lobby, Café Modern, and The Modern Shop is always free.
I was never a big fan of modern art until I took an art history class this past spring on it. The Ft. Worth Modern Art Museum held many pieces that I actually studied in class; so seeing them up close and personal was great. I understand the blank canvases now. While many artists try to copy it, those in the museums were the first. They broke the rules, rebelled against classical art to become the first of it are kind. Some notable pieces include Picasso's Femme couchée lisant, several pieces from Pollock, Rothko Light Cloud, Dark Cloud, Cindy Sherman's Untitled, Carrie Mae Weems work, Warhol '25 Colored Marilyn's' and my favorite, Martin Puryear's 'Ladder for Booker T. Washington'.
There was a special exhibit on display, Pretty Baby. It is a must see exhibit filled with amazing works from painters, sculptors, printmakers and photographers with children as their subject. Controversial, fantastical and disturbing, it is simply amazing. My favorite modern photographer, Loretta Lux, was in the exhibit, and seeing her work up close was exciting.
If you are not a fan of modern art, knowing the history behind the pieces will help you appreciate the value of why they are displayed in The Modern. The architecture of the building itself can be appreciated by picking up a copy of the museum's catalogue (unless you are like me and had to have it special ordered).
What a pleasant surprise to find so many treasures in The Modern. The collection here marvels all other museums in Fort Worth, and what is even better is that the museum offers educational materials throughout the exhibits to learn more about specific works on display.
The only negative I can say about the museum are the exhibit monitors. Do not get too close, be watchful of what works can be photographed (even by a cell phone), and be prepared if you are handicapped, as they do not trust that you can control your wheelchair/scooter around any of the barriers. Nonetheless, the museum is very handicapped friendly with a wide layout to enjoy every single piece of artwork. I give the warning of the monitors because I happened to come very close to a painting to check out the detail, and because I was in a scooter, they were afraid I would lose control, so I was stalked through the entire museum for the two hours I was there. Even once being yelled at for taking too long for looking at some pieces, and when asked why there was a time limit, I was specifically told that I could not be trusted to control my own scooter and might somehow damage the works around me even though I had done nothing to warrant such an accusation. The rest of the warnings I learned of from hearing them come down hard on other visitors. How ridiculous, but even then, don't let that stop you from visiting this gem of a museum. It certainly holds some valuable treasures.
Also, stop by the gift shop. Their catalogs of their exhibits are worth every penny and often they have bundle deals where you can buy five catalogs for the price of one or two.
Special note, disabled visitors must go to the side entrance to use the lift in order to enter the museum.
The Modern has been a reason for me to travel eight hours just to view a special exhibit on display in their facility. Ron Mueck's sculptures are on display until October 21st, and this exhibit is not one to be missed.
His sculptures are amazing and provoke emotions of many when viewing these lifelike figural works. This time, the museum shop had catalogues in stock of the Mueck exhibit, so that is an improvement.
I was disappointed to find out that a few pieces that were announced to be on display were sent back early to their respective museum locations. Nonetheless, The Modern again put on a fantastic showing of a fantastic artists work.
My taste in art leans toward the comtemporary and I was thrilled to find out about The Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, aka "The Modern". As if that wasn't enough of a stroke of luck, I happened to turn up on a day when admission is free.
The Modern has a really impressive permanent collection. Particularly memorable were some of its abstract expressionist works, and a Francis Bacon self-portrait that he did when he was 7.
The special exhibit du jour when I was there was a retrospective of Dan Flavin's work. It was all works made of flourescent lights and wasn't really to my taste, but to each his own. I can see the merit in it and I'm sure many fans of minimalism would go ga-ga over it, but it wasn't my bag.
Plan to spend 2-3 hours looking at the whole kit and caboodle. The Modern is closed on Mondays and holidays. On Wednesdays and the first Sunday of every month admission is free. Otherwise regular admission is $6, $4 for students and seniors (with ID), and free for children 12 and under. Parking is available and appeared to be free.
As usual the free admission bargain backfired on me. It just meant I got to spend more money in the Museum Shop. Cafe Modern looked wonderful as well, but it wasn't quite what I was jonesing for at the time.
The Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth was designed by the Japanese architect Tadao Ando and opened in Dec. 14, 2002. There is a fee for entry into event the permanent collection.